UofT Law faculty authors: 

Aled Edwards, Max Morgan, Arij Al Chawaf, Kerry Andrusiak, Rachel Charney, Zarya Cynader, Ahmed ElDessouki, Yunjeong Lee, Andrew Moeser, Simon Stern, William J. Zuercher, "A trust approach for sharing research reagents," 9(392) Science Translational Medicine; DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aai9055 http://stm.sciencemag.org/content/9/392/eaai9055.full


The core feature of trusts—the holding of property for the benefit of others—is better suited than are bilateral contractual arrangements to the construction of a research community dedicated to treating experimental reagents as public goods. This article describes a novel means of designing a Material Transfer Agreement that creates a relationship of trusteeship rather than a relationship specified in terms of contractual rights. The MTA was created collaboratively with the officers of the Structural Genomics Consortium, and the students and lawyers involved in the SGC externship. The open science trust we created is an attempt to use law to revive, reinforce, and extend preexisting community norms around open science, specifically in the context of sharing reagents.